Sunday, October 27, 2013


For the next few weeks, I am going to send you flowers because, well, you deserve it!  As a new collector recently told me, "These are nicer than a dozen roses because they never wilt!"  

These flowers are part of a series of 4x4 mini paintings that are being offered for only $40.  They make perfect gifts (for you or someone special) and can be placed on a little easel to add cheer to any room.  This offer is reserved just for you and my newsletter and facebook readers, so send a note to me if you'd like to start your wilt-free bouquet!
This week's flower is a brilliant red Amaryllis.  I found these in Raleigh's JC Raulston Arboretum, which is a beautiful place and definitely worth many visits.  I started with this photograph from an earlier painting (see Amaryllis at the Arboretum), but for the 4x4 mini panels I've found that it's important to focus on just one or two flowers that have an interesting silhouette.  
I chose to zoom in on this graceful Amaryllis...
... and then I made it the star of the show:
Amaryllis, 4x4 Oil, Available for $40 

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Azalea Glow VII

Azalea Glow VII is actually my tenth (and largest!) white azalea painting.  Each time I paint a white azalea I think, "Okay, that about does it for me."  And then something draws me back again.  

This time, it was the desire to create drama on a large scale, so I challenged myself to express the glow of the delicate blossoms on a 2' x 4' canvas.  Not an easy task, but It turned out just how I had hoped (which definitely doesn't always happen!)  I'm especially happy with how the strength of the values and shapes work equally well with either bright or low lighting.

Here are some of the steps in my process, starting with the original photo,
which I cropped to create interesting shapes around the flowers ("negative space").
I sketched a simple 4x4 grid to help with my placement of major shapes.  I usually use a soft pastel pencil for this stage because it wipes off easily.
Using transparent paints, I established my shapes.
After the paint dried, I covered the background greenery with a transparent blue/yellow mixture.
After the first layer dried, I added another layer and this time painted the areas of my flowers that would be shadowed.
At this point, I started in with opaque paints, keeping layers thin and adding nuances of warm and cool colors.  And, voila!  After a mere two weeks my painting is complete!  
Here's Azalea Glow VII, 24x48 Oil:
For size comparison, here it hangs at Waverly Artists Group next to two 18x24 paintings and several framed 6x6 minis.   Please stop by if you're in town!